IYC: Storm chaser contractor dupes elderly homeowners
MIDWEST CITY, OKLA. – Earl Crain has nothing good to say about Edward Cooper.
“I can’t use that language on TV,” he said. “[I’m] darn unhappy.”
Cooper said he was the grandson of a local roofer.
“He was checking with his grandpa’s customers,” Earl said. “His grandpa had passed away and left him the business.”
Cooper however made up the whole story.
He’s not even from our state.
The convicted criminal from Indiana was simply passing through Oklahoma, preying on storm victims and other elderly homeowners, like the Crains.
“When he told me how much I thought, ‘Man, this ain’t right. He’s got my signature on a contract,’” Earl said.
Of course the contract’s a joke and so is Cooper’s work.
We asked Michael Salazar from Salazar Roofing & Construction to size up the sloppy job.
“They just put tar around the pipe and tried to paint the pipe black,” Salazar said.
At our request, Midwest City Police launched its own investigation into the alleged scam artist.
“We charged Mr. Cooper with exploitation of the elderly, which is a felony,” Midwest City Police, Lt. Jerry Kennedy.
The In Your Corner team has obtained a surveillance photo of cooper cashing the Crain’s check at local credit union.
We’ve also learned Cooper was recently cited in his hometown of Terra Haute, Indiana for a misdemeanor crime.
Lt. Kennedy said, “There’s a specific trailer park where a lot of traveling construction roofing people stay and large amount of those people have Oklahoma and Texas tags because they travel this area of the country yearly.”
Back on Okie soil, Salazar Roofing wants to help the Crains repair their roof at no charge to the couple.
We’ve alerted investigators in Indiana about Cooper.
Meanwhile, the Crains tell us Cooper had an accomplice, although we’re still working to verify that man’s identity.
It’s likely there are other victims we don’t know about.
If you have any information on Cooper or his whereabouts, call Midwest City Police.